Daylong Walking Tour of Old Dhaka
$65 tour starting at
The daylong Old Dhaka walking tour walks through the mysterious heritage and the streets that are not yet mentioned in any travel guide, and an individual will not find those secrets by themselves. Puran Dhaka (Old Dhaka) is dirty, messy, and crowded, but that is part of its charm. Colorful rickshaws abound at every corner, and kids play cricket wherever they can. Mosques call for prayer, and shingara merchants often offer tourists free shingara or puri.
Probably the world considers today’s Dhaka as a most chaotic and densely populated city; maybe the density is her strength, and chaos is the rhythm of life. Dhaka has an exciting history and rich cultural heritage and has a name for its exotic culinary and cuisine.
In the early 17th Century, Dhaka became the Mughal capital of Bengal. These walking excursions feature Mughal caravansaries, palaces, and bazaars. Many Hindu and Armenian businessmen became wealthy and built colonial homes along the Buriganga River. Dhaka was one of the major and important cities on the Indian subcontinent.
Couldn’t stand for that long. Dhaka’s population and power dropped after the British took over Bengal in the mid-18th Century, whereas Calcutta thrived. In 1824, a visiting Anglican bishop from Calcutta named Dhaka a city of “magnificent ruins.”
After India and Pakistan split in 1947, most Hindu merchants fled, leaving their homes and properties behind. And the wealthy Armenian community of 300 families died or left. This tour walks inside the courtyards of beautiful old merchant residences to meet the families living there. Bright saris hang on elegant, rusted fences. Kids play hopscotch in front of chipped colonnades. An 18th-century Armenian church and a 1600 Christian cemetery are two peaceful havens in Puran Dhaka. The tour includes a short break for Bangladesh’s wonderfully sweet tea and lunch at a local eatery.
One of our tours takes the group through the 400-year-old Chawkbazaar, a tangle of street market stalls selling everything from electronics to sweets. The Barakatra used to be the tallest building in Dhaka. It had 22 shops and was a well-known grand inn for merchants who came to the city in the 17th Century. Only approximately half of the Mughal buildings are still standing, and even a public toilet has been cut into a building.
You can still stand at one of the two remaining gateways and imagine trading caravans passing through the area.
Tours stop at Buriganga River, “Dhaka’s beating heart.” On one of our tours, we take you to a rooftop overlooking the river to witness little wooden boats ferrying people and goods.
We aim to take the challenge of restoring Dhaka’s heritage buildings and attracting local and overseas tourists. Dhaka’s population has grown from 6.5 million in 1990 to 18 million in 2022, with many living in slums. The city’s overcrowded infrastructure needs upgrading. More than 20% of the city’s boxy, concrete buildings would collapse if a magnitude 7 earthquake hit.
A daylong walk of Old Dhaka is not enough to learn all its maze and charisma. One can spend a couple of days walking through the different streets, taking pictures, meeting super friendly people, exploring local craftsmanship and recycling industries, and experiencing the authentic culture and delicious foods. We try to skip museum visits on this trip to stay focused on daily life activities on the streets and cultural engagements.
- Tour Price
- $ 65
price starts from
Group Size → 1 PAX 2 PAX 4 PAX 6 PAX Per-person trip price → $146.00 $89.00 $76.00 $65.00
DepartureYour hotel/ residence (anywhere in Dhaka city)
Departure Time8:00 AM
Return TimeApproximately 6:00 PM or later; depending on your interests and the traffic situation
Dress CodeCasual, comfortable athletic clothing, closed shoes, hat. Warm jacket during the winter (November to February). Raincoat/ umbrella during the rainy season (May to August). Full sleeves are always necessary while visiting any religious place, mosque, temple, church or a trip during Ramadan.
IncludedAC vehicle with experienced chauffeur for sightseeing and transfersAll entrance fees and local permitsAll Museum TicketsAll rickshaw/ cycle / boat / local transportsBottled water, soft drinks and seasonal fruits during the sightseeingExpert English-Speaking GuideLunchTrip as per itineraryTypical Souvenir
Not IncludedAccommodation in twin sharing basis as per itineraryAll air, bus, train and launch tickets as per itineraryAny activity not mentioned in the itinerary.DinnerGratuitiesLocal guide/ escort/ experts/ academicsPersonal expenses